The Oakland Raiders Sign Former Kansas City Chiefs Center Rodney Hudson

March 11, 2015 2:05 PM PT

Shawn Jonas

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed unrestricted free agent C Rodney Hudson, the club announced Wednesday.

Hudson has started 31 games at center over the last two seasons for the Kansas City Chiefs.

Entering his fifth NFL season, Hudson has appeared in 51 games with 35 starts for Kansas City. He was originally selected by the Chiefs in the second round (55th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft. After playing in all 16 games as a rookie, Hudson started the first three games at left guard in 2012 before suffering a season-ending leg injury. He took over as the team’s starting center in 2013, helping Kansas City to back-to-back winning seasons from 2013-14.

The Mobile, Ala., native attended Florida State, appearing in 53 games with 50 starts at both guard and center. The 6-foot-2, 300-pounder earned All-ACC honors all four years and holds the conference’s career record for being named ACC Player of the Week nine times. He was also a two-time winner (2009-10) of the Jacobs Blocking Award, given to the player voted the most outstanding blocker in the ACC by a poll of head coaches and defensive coordinators.

Rodney Hudson signed a 5 year / $44,500,000 contract with the Oakland Raiders, including $20,000,000 guaranteed, and an annual average salary of $8,900,000.

Media Conference Call Q & A 

Q: Can you describe how this all came together and were you surprised that the Raiders were in the mix so heavily?
Hudson: “It happened so fast. As the season was over and the months started to fly by, and here we are today. I can’t even really remember how fast it happened, but I’m excited and I’m excited for the opportunity.”

Q: What was it about the Raiders that attracted you to sign here?

Hudson: “This is a great franchise with great tradition. I know some guys that played for some of these coaches that are friends of mine and they had nothing but great things to say. I think we have a good opportunity to come in and do some stuff.”

Q: Did you get a chance to talk to Jack Del Rio yet, and if you have, any discussions on what he liked about your game and how he thought he would use you?

Hudson: “I talked to him briefly. He’s excited for the opportunity to work with me and same with me with him. We’re excited to get started and get to work.”

Q: Is the Raiders new no-huddle offense approach something that attracted you to this team?

Hudson: “I think so. I’m excited. I think it’s a good to have in the playbook and I’m excited to get in and start learning with the guys and from the coaches and get started.”

Q: What was the motivating factor behind your decision to leave Kansas City and come to Oakland?

Hudson: “There is not one thing in particular. I have nothing to say bad about Kansas City. I enjoyed my time there. I grew a lot as an individual and as a football player and I’m thankful for that. I have nothing bad to say. I think this is a great opportunity for me and I’m excited about it.”

Q: Was Kansas City’s initial offer lower than the Raiders or on par?
Hudson: “Out of respect to the situation, I really won’t go into specifics about that. I would prefer not to.”

Q: Are you excited about the role of a leader on and off the field and a role that you feel like you can fill pretty well?

Hudson: “Definitely. I think so. I think I need to be, personally, as a center. I think leadership comes with the position and I have to do that. I’ve had that role in previous years and I’m looking forward to it and looking forward to getting ready with the guys and start learning and getting after it.”

Q: What are the things that you like about Derek Carr?

Hudson: “I think playing in the same division as Oakland and watching him last year, we obviously played some of the same teams. We played some of the same teams that he had the chance to play. I think you notice just from watching that he’s a smart kid. You watch him direct things out there and you can tell that he knows what he’s doing and he’s a good player obviously.”

Q: Was this a difficult choice for you to come to the Raiders or were you going back and forth between a couple of different teams?

Hudson: “I think any time, in anything, you’ve been one place so long and you pick up and move, I think there is a little bit of difficulty in that. I remember how difficult it was to get up and go to college after being in one place for so long. But, I’m not really concerned about picking up and moving. I think it’s a good opportunity and I’m looking for it.”

Q: What do you think about going up against the Kansas City Chiefs twice a year now?

Hudson: “It will definitely be weird at first, but it will be fun. I think any time you’re blessed with the opportunity to go out there and compete against another team on Sundays, it’s obviously fun and I look forward to it.”

Q: What was that atmosphere like last year in the Thursday night game at the Coliseum?

Hudson: “Yeah, the fans there have always been awesome. Over the years playing there, that’s one thing that they talk about is the fans, they’re always loud and into the game and very passionate about it. The Thursday night game was great, that’s the kind of atmosphere you look forward to playing in. It was great.”

Q: With the Raiders at 11-37 over the last three years and not having a winning season since 2002, what did Coach Del Rio and Reggie McKenzie say to you to get you on board and think that you could be a part of turning this around?

Hudson: “I think as a group, any time things don’t go the way you want them or anything, you have to just get back to it and get to work. There is a lot of positive energy. These guys are excited, I’m excited. I met a few players, they’re very excited to get started. I think any time you have that good, positive energy around it is good. It’s something to feed off of, feed off each other and work towards the goal.”

With Ndamukong Suh Landing With Dolphins: Raiders Are Focused On Terrance Knighton

March 8, 2015

Shawn Jonas

The Raiders were linked to Ndamukong Suh, he was supposedly going to make a visit to Oakland next week. It seems as if he is off the market.

Contract details are starting to leak, making it appear more and more like the Miami Dolphins will sign free agent defensive tackle as soon as free agency opens Tuesday afternoon. Miami was not the only team chasing Suh, however, and now those other teams are starting to turn their attention to their other targets.

Sun’s deal with the Dolphins is said to be a six year deal worth $114 million with $60 million gauranteed.

The Oakland Raiders and Terrance Knighton have been linked since Jack Del Rio signed on as head coach. Kingston had tweeted out  to AP’s @arniestapleton : “I want to be wherever Jack is. I’ll just leave it at that.” #Raiders .The Raiders are heavily invested in Denver’s Terrance Knighton, per a league source.

Knighton had followed Del Rio from Jacksonville to Denver, and has played five seasons under Jack.  Knighton has said Del Rio would be someone he would speak to if a deal can’t get worked out in Denver.

Del Rio spoke highly of Knighton last month at the NFL Scouting Combine.

“We drafted him, and we thought at that time he was kind of a dancing bear type,” Del Rio said at the time. “Kind of a big powerful man that can stay on his feet and run down the line. This game is about big, powerful men, so that the guys that have the skill level can do their things. So, this big, powerful man played well in Jacksonville. We got back together, he played well in Denver and so I appreciate that. I respect that.

“We have to have those kinds of people in our trenches on the offensive and defensive line in order to play the kind of football we expect to play.”

Another option or even a bonus next to Knighton, if he lands in Oakland, would be the young Jared Odrick from the Miami Dolphins.

The Dolphins have stated they would like to bring Odrick back to the team, but the Suh move seems to signal that they will not make a full effort to re-sign Odrick as he enters his sixth-season in the NFL. Odrick, Miami’s first-round Draft choice in 2010, has recorded 16.5 sacks, one interception, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and 129 tackles in his career.

Miami could still find a way to make the roster space to re-sign Odrick, looking to keep the 2010 28th pick next to the 2010 second overall pick once Suh officially joins the team. Odrick, however, is likely going to command a contract worth at least $7 million, a number, now that Suh is off the market, that could quickly exceed the Dolphins’ ability to pay if other teams start a bidding war.

Possible landing spots for Odrick;  Jacksonville, Oakland, Denver

The Oakland Raiders Give Rod Streater A Second-Round Contract Tender

March 7, 2015

Shawn Jonas

Rod Streater was an undrafted free agent in the 2012 NFL draft class by the Oakland Raiders. He had two strong seasons to start his career.  Streater fractured his foot in a 16-9 loss to the New England Patriots  in week 3.

With Streater set to become a restricted free agent, the Raiders gave him a second-round contract tender per league source, which virtually assures his return to the Raiders next season.

Streater is free to negotiate with other teams, but the Raiders have the right to match any offer sheet given to him. If they decline, the other team must give up a second-round draft pick in return.

Streater and the Raiders can work out a longer-term deal in the coming weeks. If not, Streater will end up signing a one-year contract with $2.356 million, the total mandated with the second-round tender.

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Photo by Shawn Jonas

While Streater is expected to return, Andre Holmes’ future is somewhat up in the air. The Raiders gave him an original-round tender worth $1.542 million, according to a separate league source. But, because he went undrafted, the Raiders won’t get  any compensation if they refuse to match an offer sheet from another team.

Holmes had 47 receptions for a team-high 693 yards last season. He also had five touchdowns.

All Photos by Shawn Jonas

 

The Oakland Raiders Part Ways With Veterans Nick Roach, Usama Young

March 6, 2015

Shawn Jonas

The Oakland Raiders released veterans middle linebacker Nick Roach and safety Usama Young on Friday.

Middle linebacker Nick Roach suffered a concussion during week three of the preseason versus Green Bay on August 22,  2014.  Still today Roach is still having symptoms from the concussion.

Roach hasn’t been cleared to resume any football activities and, in the recent weeks leading to his release, it became clear that he won’t be playing again soon. There is a chance Roach may never play again.

The Raiders released Roach with a failed physical designation.

Roach’s release comes with the Raiders saving $2.1 million in cap space and $1.6 million in dead money . He was signed through the 2016 season.

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Photo by Shawn Jonas

The Raiders released veteran safety Usama Young with the same designation. Young is rehabilitating from a knee injury. He required surgery after he tore his ACL and MCL against the Arizona Cardinals in week 7. 

There is no dead money associated with Young’s release. Oakland will save $1.1 million with that transaction.

Adding that savings to NFLPA numbers, the Raiders now have $66.47 million in salary cap space. The Raiders are expected to trade or release backup quarterback Matt Schaub with a savings of $5.5 million in cap space.  There is no specific timetable to do so.

The Raiders have a pressing need at middle linebacker. Miles Burris isn’t the answers at the MLB he was thrown into the position with the injury to Roach.  Young provided veteran cover at both safety spots. With the release of Tyvon Branch and Usama Young they Raiders are now looking for a strong safety and a reserve safety. With Charles Woodson in his 18th season we could see a priority to draft a safety possibly as soon as the third round.

All photos by Shawn Jonas

The Oakland Raiders Release Lamar Woodley After One Season

March 5, 2014

Shawn Jonas

As expected, the Raiders have released defensive end LaMarr Woodley on Thursday, per the team’s official website.

Woodley suffered a torn bicep muscle in Week 7 against the Cardinals and was place on season ending IR on October 25, 2014.

The 30 year old Woodley spent his first seven seasons with the Steelers before signing a two-year contract with the Raiders last offseason. He had just five tackles last season with the Raiders, and 304 tackles (57 sacks) through eight seasons in the league. He was scheduled to make $3.85 million with a salary cap hit of $5.1875 million.

Photo by Shawn Jonas

Oakland Raiders Maurice Jones-Drew Announces His Retirement

March 5, 2015

Shawn Jonas

Oakland Raiders Maurice Jones-Drew announced his retirement from the NFL on Thursday on Twitter.

The Oakland native and De La Salle High School graduate played nine seasons in his NFL career. Eight with the Jacksonville Jaguars and one in the 2014 season with his hometown Raiders.

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Photos by Shawn Jonas

He finished with 1,847 carries for 8,167 yards and 68 rushing touchdowns. He also had 346 receptions for 2,944 yards and 11 TDs in the passing game.

Jones-Drew had been contemplating retirement during the off season.  He had made comments about  Oakland’s new head coach Jack Del Rio.  He had some of his best years under Del Rio  in Jacksonville.

He ultimately chose to stay home with his family and continue to coach at De La Salle High School.  He liked the thought of being able to take his kids to school everyday. Something he hadn’t been able to do during his NFL career.

This was his is statement on Twitter:

“After much discussion with my family and business team during the offseason, I’ve decided to retire from the National Football League. The past nine years were absolutely amazing? I’ll be forever grateful to the countless people who have assisted me throughout me NFL journey. To my fans, and NFL fans worldwide, you are the absolute greatest! But for you, our league would not exist. Football has been a central part of my life for the past 24 year. But now I’m excited about and looking forward to the next chapter of my life.”

Jones-Drew is a Bay Area football legend. He starred at De La Salle, which never lost a game during his varsity career. He scored four touchdowns in a game against Long Beach Poly, which pitted the nation’s top prep teams against each other. He was a running back, return man and linebacker for the Spartans.

He moved on to UCLA, where he was a consensus All-American in 2005. He was selected in the second round of the 2006 draft by the Jaguars. He was named to three Pro Bowls in eight seasons with Jacksonville. He was named a first-team All-Pro in 2011, when he won the NFL rushing title.

He signed with the Raiders last offseason, and never made a real impact. There was a possibility Jones-Drew would get released this offseason or late in training camp, but he chose to retire instead.

Jones-Drew was well respected by teammates and the press. He was also heavily involved in the community with charitable endeavors he plans to continue in retirement.

The Oakland Raiders Released Veteran Strong Safety Tyvon Branch

 

March 3, 2015

Shawn Jonas

As expected the Oakland Raiders officially released veteran strong safety Tyvon Branch on Tuesday.

He was set to make $9.67 million against the 2015 salary cap.  The Raiders saved nearly $3 million in cap space by releasing the veteran.

Branch had  back-to-back seasons cut short by major leg and foot injuries.  He missed 14 games in 2013 with a fractured fibula and 13 games in 2014 with a fractured foot.  There were growing concerns inside the organization about how Branch would come back from the injuries and if he could stay healthy.

The team told Branch about his release last week.  Branch had tweeted thanks to the organization and its fans for seven years in Oakland. 

Branch is now an unrestricted free agent.

 

 

Sacramento Republic FC Fell to The New York Cosmos 3-1 In Front Of Sold Out Crowd

February 28, 2015 – Attendance: 20,231

Hughes Stadium-Sacramento, CA

Shawn Jonas

Courtesy of Sacramento Republic FC’s Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC fell to the New York Cosmos in front of a sold-out crowd at Hughes Stadium in final home preseason friendly, 3-1.

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Photo by Shawn Jonas

In a scoreless first half, Republic FC saw the majority of its chances against the visiting New York Cosmos. During the 12th minute Sacramento saw its first real opportunity, as Gabe Gonzalez got behind the defense and took on the charging Cosmos goal-keeper James Maurer.  However, Gonzalez was unable to score as the Cosmos defense came to Maurer’s aid.

Republic FC’s got another chance in the 26th minute when defender Emrah Klimenta made an attacking run up the right side and sent a driven cross into the near post. Forward Justin Braun made the near post run and sent a powerful header on goal, only to have it saved by Maurer, who made a quick reaction save to his left and sent it out of play for a Republic FC corner.

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Photo by Shawn Jonas

The second half started with a number of Republic FC’s substitutes on the field. Even though it was looking much like the first half early with neither side able to get a strong chance on goal. In the 68th minute the Cosmos broke the tie when midfielder Marcos Senna sent a free kick to the far post from 25 yards out. Republic FC keeper Patrick McLain wasn’t able to secure the ball and the defense let the ball bounce to the endline where Cosmos defender Samuel Caceres chased the ball down and sent the ball back into the box where newly signed Striker Raul Gonzalez Blanco was in perfect position. He then sent a driven header on goal as McLain scurried to get back into position and was unable to save the shot before it got past the goal line giving the Cosmos 1-0 lead.

The Cosmos would add on two more goals, the first coming in the 76th minute by Leonardo Fernandes  and in the 81st by substitute midfielder Andres Flores.  He capitalized on a mistake from the Republic FC defense giving Flores a breakaway chance that he put into the net given the Cosmos a 3-0 lead.

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Photo by Shawn Jonas

In the 86th minute the Cosmos looked poised to score after Mads Stokkelien was taken down in the box. Republic FC’s Keeper Patrick McClain made a great save on Stokkelien’s  penalty kick .

During the 89th minute Sacramento would get on the board when second-half substitute forward Joaquin Rivas sent a left-footed curler into the far post . He side-netted it past a the Cosmos substitute keeper Brian Holt.

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Photo By Shawn Jonas

“I was extremely happy with the first half performance, I thought we created many opportunities and were really unfortunate to not score a goal or two,” said Republic FC Head Coach Preki. “Then we made a lot of changes at the half and it was a totally different game. That helps us though because we got to see new players because we have decisions to make.”

Republic FC will round out their preseason on March 14 when they take on UC Davis men’s soccer team. The match will be at the UC Davis Soccer Stadium and a part of a triple-header. Tickets may be purchased at UCDavisAggies.com.

Sacramento Republic FC 1:3 New York Cosmos
Friendly Match
Bonney Field – Sacramento, CA
February 28, 2015 – Attendance: 20,231

Scoring Summary: NYC – Raúl (Samuel Caceres) 68, Leonardo Fernandes 76, Andres Flores 81; SRFC – Joaquin Rivas 89

Misconduct Summary: none.

New York Cosmos – James Maurer (Brian Holt 88); Hunter Freeman (Jimmy Mulligan 52), Hunter Gorskie, Carlos Mendes, Samuel Caceres; Raúl (Mads Stokkelien 77), Daniel Szetela (Adam Moffat 77), Walter Restrepo (Andreas Flores 77), Leonardo Fernandes (Hagop Chirishian 82), Marcos Senna (David Diosa 83); Lucky Mksoana (Sebastián Guenzatti 63)

Subs Not Used: Jeremy Figler, Dennis Chin

Stats: Shots: 10, Shots on Goal: 10 , Saves: 2, Fouls: 12, Corner Kicks: 5, Offside: 1.

Sacramento Republic FC – Patrick McLain; Emrah Klimenta, Mickey Daly, Sola Abolaji, Bilal Duckett (Chad Bartlomé 45); Ivan Mirković (Agustin Cazarez 45), Octavio Guzman (Ahmad Hatifie 45), Gabe Gonzalez (Alfonzo Motagalvan 45), Rodrigo Lopez (Gabe Gissie 45); Adnan Gabeljic (Joaquin Rivas 45), Justin Braun (Richie Cardozo 45)

Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek

Sacramento Republic FC vs New York Cosmos Match Sold Out

February 26, 2015

Shawn Jonas

Courtesy of Sacramento Republic FC Media Relations

Sacramento Republic FC vs New York Cosmos Match Sold Out

Match will be the fourth time that Republic FC has sold out Hughes Stadium

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (February 26, 2015) – Sacramento Republic FC has sold out their match against the New York Cosmos on Saturday, February 28 at Hughes Stadium. Hughes Stadium attendance capacity for a soccer event is 20,231. The match will be the fourth overall sellout by Republic FC at Hughes Stadium. Kickoff is 7:00 p.m. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.

There will be no ticket sales on site or walk-up sales available due to the sellout. Pre-match activities include food trucks, beer garden, inflatables, live music by Epislona and games for all ages. Tailgating is not permitted on campus or in the parking lot.

Because of limited parking on site, Republic FC highly recommends that fans take public transportation or carpool to the match. Regional Transit will provide additional trains post match and staff to assist crowds. Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates (SABA) will be operating a free bike valet near the west parking lot on the Sacramento City College campus. Bike riders are encouraged to avoid Freeport Blvd. Additional details on matchday activities, including parking and bike maps, are available on SacRepublicFC.com.

Parking is $10. Parking lots and will call open at 5:00 p.m.

Champs!

Photos by Shawn Jonas

ABOUT SACRAMENTO REPUBLIC FC
Sacramento Republic FC are the 2014 USL Champions. The club hosts its home matches at Bonney Field located on the grounds of Cal Expo. The club’s commitment to position Sacramento as an “indomitable city” is evident through its community investments and efforts to procure an MLS franchise. The club is “Built for MLS” with the highest caliber of talent, both on and off the field, including 2014 USL PRO Coach of the Year Predrag “Preki” Radosavljević. The club’s motto is urbs indomita – Indomitable City. Indomitable Club. For more information, visit SacRepublicFC.com.

Sacramento Republic FC Falls To The San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 In Front Of Record Crowd

Febraury 21, 2015 

Bonney Field-Sacramento, CA

Shawn Jonas

Sacramento Republic FC wasn’t able to score on the MLS San Jose Earthquakes. The Earthquakes lone goal was enough to get  their third straight win against their MLS affiliate .

In the Republic FC’s first home game of 2015, and their first game back at Bonney Field since winning the USL Pro Championship, Sacramento set a new record with a crowd of 9,974. There was excitement in the air about the new season.  The region and team officials are making a strong case for an MLS franchise.

San Jose started the match strong, earning a corner kick within the first six minutes. Republic FC settled down and worked hard for more possessions. Neither team threatened to score very much in the first half.

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Patrick McLain, Sacramento’s newest signing, had a couple of great saves and was able to keep it scoreless at the half.

During the 36th minute, Republic FC forward Thomas Stewart crossed to a running Adnan Gabelijic, but San Jose goalkeeper David Bingham made a sliding save to keep the game scoreless.

In the 51st minute San Jose was able to get  a shot past McLain and score the first and lone goal of the match. The Earthquakes Matias Perez Garcia got his shot past McLain to put San Jose ahead 1-0.

Republic FC set the tempo for most of the second half,  but couldn’t break through the Earthquakes defense to get a goal.

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“I saw a lot of good things on the field. Obviously we made a couple mistakes, and we got punished for one,” said Republic FC head coach Preki. “We kept the ball really well against an MLS team and that’s all we need. That shows you that our guys are pretty capable,” Coach Preki added.

Sacramento Republic FC 0:1 San Jose Earthquakes

Friendly Match
Bonney Field – Sacramento, CA
Febraury 21, 2015 – Attendance: 9,794

Scoring Summary: SJ- Matias Perez Garcia (Chris Wondolowski) 51

Misconduct Summary: Shea Salinas (caution) 25; SRFC – Bilal Duckett (caution) 28, Rodrigo Lopez (caution) 48, Ivan Mirković (caution) 59, Emrah Klimenta (caution) 76.

San Jose Earthquakes – David Bingham; Marvell Wynne (Brandon Barklage 72), Victor Bernardez (Mike Fucito 72), Clarence Goodson (Paulo Renato 64), Jordan Stewart (Shaun Francis 64); JJ Koval, Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi, Matias Perez Garcia (Tommy Thompson 64); Sanna Nyassi (Cordell Cato 69), Chris Wondolowski (Adam Jahn 72), Shea Salinas (Leandro Barrera 64).

Subs Not Used: Bryan Meredith, Ty Harden, Cameron Iwasa, Kris Tyrpak.

Stats: Shots: 14, Shots on Goal: 4, Saves: 6, Fouls: 12, Corner Kicks: 5, Offside: 4.

Sacramento Republic FC – Patrick McLain; Emrah Klimenta, Mickey Daly, Bilal Duckett (Matthias Bonvehi 85), James Kiffe (Sola Abolaji 45); Octavio Guzman (Agustin Cazarez 71), Ivan Mirković, Justin Braun (Joaquin Rivas 71), Rodrigo Lopez (Gabe Gissie 71); Thomas Stewart (Gabe Gonzalez 71), Adnan Gabeljic (Richie Cardozo 76).

Subs Not Used: Dominik Jakubek, Chad Bartlomé.

Stats: Shots: 10, Shots on Goal: 6, Saves: 3, Fouls: 15, Corner Kicks: 1, Offside: 2.